Little Brother was a rap group based out of Durham, North Carolina, consisting of rappers Phonte and Big Pooh, and producer 9th Wonder.
The trio met while attending college in the late ‘90s, and joined forces to begin creating music and performing locally. They released their first song in 2001, “Speed,” and eventually created enough buzz to garner a record deal with indie label ABB Records the following year. This year also saw the release of what is one of their most popular songs on the underground circuit, the video game themed “Atari 2600.”
The group’s debut The Listening was released in 2003, and was critically acclaimed for their lyrical capabilities, content matter, and production. Around the same time, 9th Wonder landed a placement on Jay-Z’s The Black Album, undoubtedly garnering more eyes and ears for Little Brother as a whole.
Now with a broader fan base, The Listening’s follow up—2005’s The Minstrel Show—was well received by fans and critics. However, as their major label debut on Atlantic Records, it wasn’t considered a commercial success. By the time their third album began production in 2006, creative differences resulted in Little Brother exiting Atlantic Records, and it also saw the departure of 9th Wonder from the group.
Little Brother’s third album, Getback, was released the following year independently, as was its follow up, Leftback, in 2010. Following the release of the latter, the group decided to part ways.
Phonte, Big Pooh, and 9th Wonder all continue to release music as solo acts.